Jun
10
2011
37

I Am Back In The Saddle + Rue Magazine + Thank You

Hello all, I am back after a couple of weeks in Sweden. It feels so good to be back. Thank you for not giving up on me!

I tend to not want to get too personal on my blog. But I am going to tell you anyway, since there have been many hints on my blog, that my wonderful Mom in Stockholm has been diagnosed with Alzheimer’s. I am just going to say this once and only because there might be one or several of you out there going through the same thing with a loved one. If I can be of any support or help to any of my readers then use my strength and energy. Good news, in my case, is that all the hard work and nights filled with worries have turned into something good and my Mom is very happy in a new home — and we are beaming with her!

So, where did we last left off? Well, Rue magazine ended up being a wonderful experience (and it gave me two new design jobs!). You can see my home in the fabulous Rue Magazine here. Thank you all for you tremendous support and your heart warming e-mails and comments. I am a little overwhelmed by it all. There are so many generous people out there! I have lately only been focusing on my Mom in Stockholm, but now that I’m back in the saddle in Seattle, I am going to respond to each and every one of you. Your support means the world to me.

I have received quite a few e-mails regarding my book wallpaper. Seen here in my home office.

It is Andrew Martin and I ordered it from London via his showroom in NY. I like it a lot!

I also put up some wall paper behind my old sad and lonely plate rack. I have never picked anything with flowers on before but I was going for a look that was old yet new and interesting. Can I just say again how a little bit of wall paper can take a room or wall a long way! I am definitely hooked. And there are so many fun patterns out there.

Here are a few images from the photo shoot (via the lovely photographer Dorothee) that did not end up in the magazine. My favorite is definitely the first one with my old Swedish 18th c. secretaire and my favorite painting in the house by Swedish Peter Frie (perhaps the most well known landscape painter in Sweden today). You know what I will say — simple is beautiful.

My favorite light fixture in the house is this photo lamp by a NY designer. It is called “Picnic in the park” and I love putting it next to antiques.

Wall artwork by the talented Curt Asker. I am obsessed with his work.

Did any of you (more than Charlotta!) notice that my old Swedish mirror (new glass though) got a brand new old American icon – Dr. Seuss – quote? Swedish royal mixed with American royal! My good friend Allison wrote the quote in literally 10 seconds (her handwriting is much better than mine!) and she used a permanent marker!

And yes, those wonderful wall baskets are Ralph’s (!) via The Bootstrap project.

And how can resist showing Prince William? Charming and good hearted he is and the best sport in front of the camera!

I also would like to extend my deepest gratitude to these fabulous ladies and friends. They all decided to feature my Rue segment on their own blogs. (Follow the links). (Yikes, I hope I did not forget anyone! Let me know if I did, I am still a bit jet lagged!).

Haute Design

Mochatini

Solid Frog

Space For Inspiration

Komma Hem

Nancy Marcus Design

Belathée Photography Blog

Ladies, have you all gone insane?I had already received my day in the spotlight! I did not exactly need more! It was totally unexpected and such at treat. Thank you from the bottom of my heart! You are all amazing, generous and wonderful. Several of you I have met or talked with in person and I am hoping to meet all of you before the end of the year — and many other lovely bloggers as well!)

Finally, I am today featured on another dear friend’s blog, Julie with Belle Vivir (yet another blogger who I am all mushy for and look forward to meeting in person). She is starting a new series today called  “A Blogger With Style” and she is kick-starting it with little me. What an honor! Thank you Julie!

Hop over here to read her segment.

My first post back in the US. Great to be back in the saddle!  Next week I plan to unveil William’s big boy room (long due, I know).

Happy weekend to you all!

P.S What on earth happened to “Blogger” when I was gone? I hope it is fixed now because I want to connect with friends!

Images. no. 1 via Sky Horse, no. 4 via Andrew Martin. All other images via Splendid Willow.

Written by Splendid Willow in: My Home,Thank you! | Tags:

May
16
2011
24

My Latest Love

I am sorry to disappoint you all — it is not a lovely piece of furniture or a new chic outfit or adorable pup. It is something as un-sexy as a window cleaning gadget. Yes, really!

In two days a photo shoot is taking place at my house (a first for me – yikes!) for a chic design magazine. It has put me in over-drive.

Usually I hire someone to clean my windows but this time I decided to attack them myself. So on Mother’s Day, when many of you were busy celebrating, I sent hubby and the kids to the Swedish school (which they attend once a week) and then I marched down to the local hardware store and came back with  the “Ettore Window Wand Combo” and a rectangular bucket.

The best investment ever! Yes, I can personally testify that this gadget made window cleaning fun and so easy. (This is not a paid advertorial. This is my very personal opinion). ABC, three strokes with the sponge, then turn the gadget and 1, 2, 3 and the squeegee instantly took care of all the access water and left the windows crystal clear without one single streak!  (I use simple  organic dish detergent). I am totally smitten with this gadget which makes me look like & feel the most perfect housewife (Ha!). I was purring like a cat the rest of Mother’s Day! (I am obviously easy to please).

Speaking of love, I want to distribute some extra love to my good blog friend Claudia with Stonehouse Love who just launched her first on-line store — Hey Little Diddle. Congratulations my friend! The store looks wonderful! (All the items are made by indie designers and artisans).

Here you will find all kinds of lovely things for the young ones.

 Hop over and see for yourselves (here).

I am off to fluff pillows and figure out where I can hide hubby and three messy kids until it’s over… I hope to give you a photo-shoot update soon.

Warm hugs to you all!

Written by Splendid Willow in: My Home |

Apr
11
2011
28

My New Therapy – Hanging Wallpaper

As you learned in my previous post, I am not very good at painting walls. There seems to be a clear disconnect between me and my vision… But I have found another home improvement hobby that I am really hooked on — putting up wallpaper. And without any help, I am proud to report.

Ever since my dear friend Ingrid came to my home and helped me put up this classic Hick’s Hexagon beauty in my foyer I felt that there was something very therapeutic about it.

It takes time, concentration and quiet. I like that. I get totally lost in the process and forget everything around me and thoughts that I may have been pre-occopied with. It is just me and the wall and a lovely pattern. It feels good!

Now, with a busy household of kids and animals running all over — I turn to my wallpaper projects after the kids are in bed and I work until the wee hours. I go to bed exhausted at times but always (so far) content and with a smile!

I am working on 2 small projects right now — and I am going to take my sweet time. No stress here. I want it to be perfect and that is also liberating. Otherwise I tend to want to have things done quickly.

I have bought my first anything with flowers on, I think. I am not a girlie girl. But I really wanted some flowers this time and this is what I came up with. I chose this pattern with a specific antique piece in mind. (The wall is actually already done and you will see it soon!).

Laurence Llewelyn-Bowen designed the wallpaper for Graham and Brown. It is called Shantung (in chocolate brown).

The second wallpaper I could not find in the US so I hopped over to Bodie and Fou in London and purchased this vintage bookshelf wallpaper which is going to be an accent wall in a room I have never shown you before. Pretty cool, don’t you think? (No, this is not instead of books, folks — my home will always be filled with lots of good, real books. They can never be replaced).

I recently came across this FANTASTIC metallic grass cloth wallpaper from Crezana Design. Out of this world stunning. Can I find room for it at my house? I feel it has my name on it. How many different wallpapers can a home take?

There you have it  — my new way of filling my head with good thoughts and erasing any daily tension and stress — wallpapers and wallpapering!

Happy new week to you all.

Images: no. 1 via Flickr, no. 2 via AVL Furnishings.

Written by Splendid Willow in: My Home |

Apr
07
2011
35

William’s Room Makeover: Chalkboard Wall

Williams’ room is coming together, just at a snail’s pace, I must say. My husband has been very busy lately so the house handyman has mostly vanished. So I’ve been relying mostly on Moi and even if I know what I want I am far from the most skilled DIY’er.

It was pretty clear to me, before I even started this project, that I wanted a large chalkboard wall for Prince William’s new room. But I wasn’t so sure I wanted a large black wall. He is only three and I want him to have a happy vibe in his room.

Then I saw Reese’s (my happy and sweet blogfriend in Italy! Thank you for the inspiration girl!) red wall and decided that’s what I wanted. A red chalkboard wall.

Easy right? I am sure for everyone else — except me.

I went to Home Depot and got this chalkboard paint that comes in 12 different colors (who knew?) and they mixed it for me. My dear friend Katrine and I measured and masked properly (with Green frog tape wich does not let paint bleed through) and then it was time to paint away.

Everything went wrong. Wrong color (too purple), wrong texture and clearly wrong application. And the more I worked on it — the uglier it got. I got so frusterated I almost called a professional painter. (People, I can’t even paint a few square meters. I am such a loser!).

Fortunately hubby came to the rescue. With a new red color and a different flat sponge brush he got it all even and nice. He was singing away while I stained moldings that I also had also bought at Home depot. (I stained them gray. I felt that white was to common). The Mr. got to cut them nicely and install them.

Now, don’t laugh. You might think this is a hidious looking wall. But we like it. It gives the room some color and it is practical. William practices his spelling all the time and invites his friends to play along.

The room is not done yet (nor styled), but here you at least see the wall in its full glory (and a little bit of the new blue ceiling). Note: the camera is making the walls more pink than they are!

Now I am on the hunt for a great sconce above the frame. I am really liking the Boston Library lamps. Both classic and current. A little pricey perhaps but I don’t mind splurging on quality lamps (and quality shoes!).

Next time I show this room — it will be done. I promise!

Thank you for all your e-mails and comments about my new 2 cents series. I really like this series and I am putting together a list of topics I want to learn more about (thank you for your suggestions) & I will be knocking on blog friends’ doors. Let’s hear the best from the best!

Warm hugs to all of my readers.

Images: no. 2 via Thomascbyrd, no. 3 via Rambles with Reese

Written by Splendid Willow in: My Home |

Mar
09
2011
36

Oh No! Crash Boom – This Made Me So Sad…

Something sad happened over at my house. See that antique, Swedish plaque on the wall (ca 1840) which I bought at an auction in Sweden a few years ago? Well, I love it and treasure it. (And you don’t find too many of them anymore – or they will be snapped up quickly).

Right when we are about to leave for our Vancouver trip (a couple of weekends ago), and the kids are all buckled up in the car, my husband hears this BOOM, CRASH and rushes to see what happened just in time to see the cat (Charlie!) jumping off a table where the plaque was temporary leaning against a wall (how stupid can I get?!).

My dear plaque fell down on the hardwood floor — and look at it now!!! Bohoooo! I cried for a second or two until my husband yells “It is just stuff for God’s sake! Let’s go! The kids are waiting in the car!!!” (And off we went, even though I was quiet for the first 30 minutes).

I have no idea if it can be repaired and if it is even worth repairing. But my good friend Katrine knows a really good quality antiques restorer here in Seattle, so we shall see. Though I think I will have to sell quite a few boots in order to afford it…

On a much happier note, I am honored to have been invited over to my lovely blog friend, Jill’s blog , Live Like You, to showcase 10 things that I like about my bedroom. Far from being a fancy and designed room, at least it has a personal stamp on it.

In that post I am showing an art piece created by myself. You might find it completely hideous — doesn’t bother me one bit! Art is (and should be) very personal and this piece is meaningful to me.

Hop over and read the story here. And say hi to the talented Jill who is a fellow Swede on the US west coast. I met her last summer in blog and I so appreciate her friendship and her great style (and blog!). 

And don’t forget to enter “A Perfect & Splendid Giveaway” over at the lovely A Perfect Gray. You can win a pair of high-end Ilse Jacobsen boots from my store! Go here!

Warm hugs to you all.

Written by Splendid Willow in: Guest Posts,My Home |

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